zombiepreparation wrote:Balcony garden. Yesterday.
Eggs! Eggs on the arugula!
Deep breath. Examination. Eggs Everywhere on the arugula!
You've got this Zprep. Now, in addition to the squashing / mental therapy, take a good look at your arugula and see what (if anything has the plants stressed).
When I found my black seeded Simpson covered with aphids, I was surprised by my response. Instead of panic, I was calm (not pleased
, but calm). Surprisingly calm. Is-there-something-wrong-with-me? calm
). The very first thing that went through my head was, "Hmm, what's making these plants unhappy? What's weakened them enough to cause them to fall victim to this opportunistic attack?". Turned out to be the new potting soil (Scotts Moisture Advantage) that I bought at Big Lots. Guess that's why it's discontinued.
Right. That occurred to me too. But I couldn't figure out what I might be seeing. ????
Now, I read 'somewhere' 'sometime' I 'think' that aphids also come when plants are going to seed. The plants are dieing out when they go to seed, right? I had the thought that could be the variable that brought them. What do you think? And this arugula is determined to seed beyond all measures I can come up with researching the net. I've pinched, I've cut it way down, but this baybe's determined to seed, even before it got very hot at all.
Now I'm letting it seed. I'll harvest them.
After I harvest them I'm going to use these fingers of branches I've saved all winter and mix them in the lower part of the soil, like a mini hugelkultur bed (I saw it on the Internet), replant arugula or something
and see what happens.
Anyway, the bug/egg squashing worked. Just 'why' it worked remains to be discovered. I mean, aphids are born pregnant right? So you could get a herd of 'em right off the bat if a couple or so showed up. And if you squashed them and hundreds of them and their eggs one day, and under 10 the next day it could just be that I got em all. Buuuuuutt, it could also be that if another one showed up they didn't hang around because of all their smashed brethern everywhere.
Who knows. But I don't have aphids anymore.
One of my lettuce showed "worm sign". I had a leaf eater. I was looking for the smaller green ones the Cabbage White Butterfly make but couldn't find any, besides it was a different 'kind' of eating. And I'd read 'something' 'somewhere' 'sometime' I 'think' that there is a type of caterpillar actually called a leaf eater. They don't eat holes into the leaf, they just keep shearing the leaf down as they eat.
I couldn't see one but after two days I decided to not give the leaf eater any more of the lettuce (I only had two seeds worth anyway) and chopped both of them down with plans of reseeding.
I looked over the leaves carefully after cutting them. Nothing. I puzzled over it awhile. Then I remembered I'd read 'something' 'somewhere' 'sometime' that some caterpillars burrow just under the soil during the day. So I took a stick and sort of piddled arounds scooting the soil around..... and scared myself to death when I found this big honking caterpillar just under the soil. Big long fat. Not scary to touch, it was just the surprise of this large old critter I'd had no previous experience with and was expecting a little old thing.
Just after I squashed it I head slapped myself because I could have thrown the thing onto the lawn for some bird to f.e.a.s.t. on.
But now I know the "worm sign" for a leaf eater and where to find it. OKAY!
And I've tried rubbing out (literally) aphids and their eggs. I wasn't squeamish about it at all either.
And I'm going to be replanting both containers with the bottom full of wood pieces to see if they'll absorb and hold water like the tree trunks & logs in my hugelkultur beds.
Oh yeah, and I'm watering the containers from the bottom. I forget what it's called. I'm just sitting them in a bucket of water and letting them soak up what they will. man. It's so much nicer that watering from the top down with water draining out of them.